BS052 Mother Superior and Her Fields of Migraine
Our intentions with this album, were to take elements from avant garde jazz, classical music, black metal and electronic music and create an amalgamation.
"Mother Superior and Her Fields of Migraine" is the first installment of the Praying for the be(a)st tryptich. This section tells the story of our character indulging in misery, self-realization, seclusion, developing phobias, anxieties and a need to break out to help his own mind. Accepting negativities, even though it is clear that the consequences of those negativities would be grim. To accept evil just to get some purpose. This section of the story takes place in a single room. We hope the music is picturesque enough for you to immerse yourselves into this story.
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Subject: MSAHFOM review
Black River Time Bombs
This song is the most perfect introduction song to any experimental band that I have ever heard. One of the reasons why that is, is that it sends a totally false tone out for the rest of the album. The band was wise to choose bandcamp and archive because the user has an option of listening to all the songs before they may or may not pay for it. In my opinion, this song
represents pure evil. Like the feeling serial killers must get when they kill for joy. Another reason this is a perfect opener is the structure of it. It is almost a summary of the album, regarding the instruments, genres, styles, rhythm structures, phrasings and time signatures. For instance, Black River Time Bombs mixes break-beat electronic music with jazz piano chords, an extremely evil sounding bass line, and synths that if personified, would be a cold, evil person. Glitch loops to finish the song off.
With wings, you will learn to fall
Imagine sitting at an abandoned city parking lot. The city was abandoned about 30 years ago as an aftermath of a war of some kind. There is no one else in this town and no one has been there in a while either. Imagine sitting down and feeling like everyone who ever lived there is standing behind your back, chanting satanic chants as if you are the sacrifice. No vision just sound. This song doesnt only sound structurally complex, but has many facets of a horror story intertwined. The anxiety and the sense of evil intentions sparked from "Black River Time Bombs" is now completely changed into fear. Calling this music "dark", would be an understatement.
wasted faces in secret places (behind this wall acoustic version)
I bought this album after I watched RftD's first official music video (which, if you havent yet, you should definitely check out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7s4ZXG0pM0). The original version of this song had been my all-time favorite by them. This version is great on its own though. The peaceful melodies and calm guitars just show us a very peaceful side of the album. This story is not all doom and gloom, there are elements of love and loneliness due to a lack of love. This section of the triptych pays a lot of attention to emotions and different feelings that a person under such circumstances would feel
Crawl into my Crawl Space
This is when the darkness of the album returns. Not too dark still, but the guitars take you on a journey to almost a side story. This is the only song on the album that seems to be reminiscing about the character's past. The contrast of how things used to be and how they got fucked up. "Crawl Space" seems to be an attempt to force you in to somebody's brain so that you can hear their story. Willingly or otherwise. To know more about the character's past and his addictions and his seclusion and isolation from the world, one must observe him in their own world. But since the world created here by RftD is so bleak and dark, that one must crawl into it like a serpent and eventually become one of them for a while to really understand their thought process. This is also one of the only song with guitar based rhythms and not a lot of diversity with instruments. Which is where the band's thoughts about minimalism come in. More on that as we go on.
Ghosts keep me safe while you are gone (pictures of invisible people remix)
Again, if you havent had a chance to know about the original version of this song, please do (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KYFh1IMetUs). This song, both versions, can be taken in a lot of different ways. Even me and my boyfriend cant agree with each other's interpretation. I am gonna tell you about mine. I think, this song is a love song. But a very, VERY sad love song. Why I think its a love song is because the author of the song is obviously talking to a loved one that has departed. Be it temporarily, or forever. Hence, the author is letting them know that he is safe while his lover is gone. The titles usually speak for most of the songs, when it comes to RftD, and this is probably my favorite song title of any of their songs. The question is what "ghosts" refers to. An obvious answer to that would be the thoughts and the voices in the character's head that keep him together when the world around him is forcing him to fall apart. Another possible reference can be actual ghosts. The character constantly talks about a lack of sleep and his addictions. Anxieties and phobias combines, this could very well mean hallucinations. People from his past (which might actually be his lover who had departed forever) "visiting" him and always being around him. The beauty of that being, while most people would be scared off and not be comfortable at all in that situation, the character feels safe enough to tell his lover to not worry. Just thinking about the possible stories behind this song gives me chills, I can not even explain what listening to it does to me.
This is where the true evil, that the description of the album talked about, comes through. This is the first and the only song by RftD so far, that has a direct reference to the devil, Mephisto. This song alone is a hundred horror films playing in your head at the same time. That feeling (which RftD have specialized with this album) of feeling like someone is standing behind you, is very prominent in this song. A million mosters fighting for your attention and then you realize that whoever wins, you have already lost. This song is almost like a very horrific intermission to a movie. No percussion in this song makes it that much scarier. I dare you to listen to this on a lonely night, all by yourself under the influence of a psychotropic drug.
Goodbye voltaire (you gave me sleep)
The second act begins. This song is almost a reprise feeling of "Black River Time Bombs". Similar restless drum patterns, a very haunting yet welcoming piano, a solid bassline and a glitch noises that make their own beats. The bass line in the beginning has an aura of frustration and anger and that leads to some of the best beats used in a glitch type song. RftD have consistently made references to philosophical and literary figures like Alduous Huxley, Poe, and now Voltaire. Assuming Voltaire is a reference to the 17th century philosopher. With complex beat structures and a repetitive (and very enjoyably so) piano, this song captures the frustration caused by lack of sleep perfectly. The "breakdown" with a classical approach to the same melody and an acoustic guitar making a cameo leads into a very disturbing breakbeat that shelters the piano as perfectly. It is as if the band is trying to show that beauty can be found in the darkest places you would imagine sometimes. All you have to do is listen.
I am not coming back home
I feel like this is where the character realizes that there is absolutely no turning back at this point. Being around monsters, make you a monster and the character has realized that he is nothing else but a "black in your white". The beautiful and absolutely poetic lyrics make the intentions of the song clear but its interesting that they presented such a dark song with such pretty instrumentation. I wasn't too big of a fan of the vocals but the lyrics in this song alone make up for it. 'Skip my stones oh queen of bore/ my bees and flowers have become your whores', 'you wont stop knocking, while im breaking my bones', 'Mom, I'm alone/ but dont send help or your stones'. Some of the saddest, yet beautiful lyrics.
goodbye voltaire (and all the rain that made me smile)
This song is the most different of all songs. By which, I mean its very standard which is different for the album. Perhaps its to show the normalcy in that characters life. To tell us that the whole story of this album is just a story and only the character is delusional of all of us. Another reference to Voltaire but it is still not clear what the reference is made regarding. Even with the "standard" approach of the song, it is very well written. I find myself having this song on repeat for an entire day on a weekend and just sit around. An awesome song to contemplate to.
Every god is a monster
Normalcy out the window again. This song is torturously deceitful. The brilliant beginning is laid with beautiful and expressive guitars and layers of melodies to take your heart away. You can feel yourself humming along and swaying with the melody and just fall in love with everything in your life again. Then 1:46 hits and there are noises that imply that those evil forces are back. The song speeds up as you are trying to listen to it more and it goes into a heavy metal section. When you listen to the first minute and a half of this song, you have no idea it would also be the heaviest song on the record. With loud harmonics and fast bass and guitars, this song is definitely a testimony to the skill and creativity involved in the making of this record.
Always in Hallways
IMO, this song is about being left alone and waiting all the time. The organs slowly massage your temper from the previous song but doesnt let you get too comfortable because you have to get more used to emotional rollercoaster of a turmoil that your rest of the life is going to be. This album is reminds of "A Clockwork Orange" a lot with the brainwashing aspect of the music.
Curl up, its time to die
Make sure you wear your headphones for this song, if not through the whole album. Turn the volume up. A demonic ballad sung, written and performed incredibly. Now that I think about it, I change my mind, "Curl up, its time to die" is my favorite song on Mother Superior and her Fields of Migraine. The choice of vocals has been absolutely brilliant on their part. The singer has an amazing voice, With a very tritonal jazz bass line, the percussion in this song almost makes it one of the best songs I have ever listened to. There are instances of swing jazz with the bass and drums playing off each other. The piano in this song is as profound as the rest of the instruments and it brings back the minimalism thinking. Sure the whole song couldve been performed with repetitive pianos but the individual notes here and there add a completely different feeling. The wobbles at 2:28 add another groove to the song where you are disturbed by it, but cant help but nod your head. "I want you... I want you dead/ leave my head" The guitar at the end takes you to a eastern land, still barron, where you strip away your soul and lay curled up in the fetal position. Prepare to die.
Praying for the be(a)st
I would like to quote ncarter2190's review from above here. "The beginning keyboards build to an ominous feeling, and the glitch drums building in the back for the entire song feel like a literal demon is being summoned." That is probably the best way to describe this song. Notice that this song shares its name with the title of the tyiptych. With how consistently these guys have impressed me, it seems like this song is a set up for something coming up on the next CD. How you can make this song better is beyond me but I am sure they will find a way. As the title promises, this song sounds exactly like a prayer. For the beast? For the best? So when our character took us to that barron land in the east, to be prepared to die, he accepted his negativities and embraced his evil. This song is our character summoning the beast.
no one ever comes here, but me (død av en spøkelse versjon)
Yet again, if you havent heard the original version of this song, here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CbArFTxdWTk And yet again, though based on a song with the same title, this song is completely different. For the people who didnt bother to look it up, "død av en spøkelse versjon" means "death of a ghost version" which is ancient Norwegian. I am still not too sure what the title means in this song, but that is only because I can not think about anything when I listen to this song. The first time you hear male vocals on this record, just humming but not in a sense of careless humming. In a sense of a lullaby. This is a lullaby told by someone who has had nothing but negativities in his life. He himself doesnt know that his humming is making the listener bring to tears but he hums away anyway. The acoustic guitars backed with strings and a piano add to that sadness. This song captures loneliness in its purest form. 2:53, the chords come in and strings get more melodic and thereby sadder. The naive beauty in this song stems from utter depression and loneliness and is one of the most emotional songs on this album.
freelance dream killing machine (gunpoint dub mix)
To come full circle of an experimental album, here is a dubstep/dance remix of yet another song by RftD. Freelance Dream Killing Machine is a very evil rhetoric on its own, but this remix sounds more evil since it seems to be the celebration of that evil. I am not too much into electronic music like dubstep or house or dance music, but this song has a specific quality to it that forces you to bob your head to the beat. This song is a perfect end to the album, since it is a distraction from the rest of the story. You want to know what happened to the character next but instead all you are left with a torn sense of perception and a wait. Another reason for this song being perfect is because all along the album, we thought that the character is the one being brainwashed and trained for the uncertainty in life. The waves of turmoil are almost always there, and by the end of this song, we realize it was us being trained the whole time. We are the spectacle still.
All in all, I would say this is one of the best albums I have listened to in my life. Collectively, and some individually. Needless to say, I cant wait for the next part of this album. I wish this band the
best of luck in the future because they are already one of my top three favorite bands.
Subject: Mother Superior and Her Fields of Migraine
Some of the standout tracks from the album:
The opening track, Black River Time Bombs, could arguably be one of the strongest tracks off of the album. An eerie repetitive bass line is used throughout the song along with the use of ambient and melodic synth lines that gives this track a very dark feel. The glitch drums that appear at the end lets the electronic influence shine through. The track provides a very emotional template encompassing anxiety and fear. Overall, it is a very strong and short opener from RFTD.
With Wings, You Will Learn to Fall starts out with a demonic chant spoken in Gaelic. This wins extra points for me given that I am extremely Irish. This track gives you a consistent feeling that someone is looking over your shoulder. The voices continue throughout most of the song while dissonant rhythms on the piano as well as Roswell-esque synth lines shine through. It is a great song for a dark drive at night by yourself.
Wasted Faces in Secret Places (Acoustic Version) revisits the band’s post-rock roots. However, saying that the band is at all a post-rock band at this instant will undoubtedly cause band member Aki S to visit my apt and kill me slowly with my own knife. All homicide aside, this track really calms you down after the unnerving nature of the first two tracks.
Ghosts Keep Me Safe While You are Gone (Remix) sounds like the backing track for someone waiting for bad news at first, but then the beat kicks in after the synth and the pseudo-crescendo offers a feeling of optimism after a somewhat unnerving experience. This song has a lot to offer the listener. One can notice different nuances at each listen.
Goodbye Voltaire (You Gave Me Sleep) is a very beat oriented song that focuses its energy mainly on the break beat sound. The poly-tempo pattern doesn’t let you get too comfortable while a droning synth line is played in the foreground of the soundscape. The drum pattern at the end is what made it for me; it’s extremely catchy and very glitchy.
Every God is a Monster is easily the most metal influenced track on this album. Though it may start out with a euphoric major scale melody on clean guitars it evolves into something much darker. The talk box style synth kicks in for the bridge, the beat changes up and the distorted guitar melody arises. Laded with palm muting and pinch harmonics, I was very happy to see this side of RFTD being that I am a longtime fan of hardcore music.
Through no fault of their own, I didn’t like two songs off of the album. I Am Not Coming Back Home and Curl Up it’s Time to Die both feature female guest vocals. The reason my fondness didn’t fall on these tracks is because the vocal melody and harmony is not very good in my opinion. The vocalists do make the tracks sound creepier but I don’t believe that RFTD need any help giving their songs an eerie feel. Curl Up it’s Time to Die’s instrumentals are very interesting if you don’t get too distracted by the vocalists. My favorite parts of that song include the synth bass line, the piano, and the bass wobble and the Arabic scale acoustic guitar solo at the end of the song. It’s just my opinion but I think Curl Up it’s Time to Die would have been better left as an instrumental.
If nothing else this album is worth a concentrated listen. Just know that one cannot pick up on every detail from this album the first time through. Mother Superior and Her Fields of Migraine proves to be a very solid release from Aki and Keith of Radio for the Daydreamers.
S.O.M.A. (Students organizing the multiple arts)
Subject: Mother Superior and Her Fields of Migraine
Similar to much of RftD's work, Mother Superior is a roller-coaster of emotion filled with instrumental labyrinths, every instrument's glimmer of hope is met by darkness in admirable contrast. “Crawl into my crawl space” lays a path to audible glory, enveloping you with rhythm. The song's every grind is split open with it's sharp piano and crashing symbol. Everyone knows those songs that fall together and take you with them, “Crawl...” is one of those songs. The thing about it is that I can't come up with a single other artist that would compare; RftD executes an immensely original sound and ear for pattern, which isn't always so common in electronic music.
The band recently released a video for “Wasted Faces in Secret Places,” which is not featured on Mother Superior, although an acoustic version of the song made it to the track list. The acoustic version boasts it's own separate quality, with the beginning of the song reminding me of a black metal intro and by the end all the layers combine to form peaceful ambiance. Another rerelease, or remix, from the album was “Ghosts keep me safe while you are gone (pictures of invisible people remix)”. Having personally liked this much more than the original, the keyboards in this song are masterful, striking and swaying with every progression. About two-thirds of the way through the song, it really picks up with an acoustic guitar layered under several keyboard patterns.
“Magnetar Mephisto” is reminiscent of Silent Hill's theme music rolled together beautifully and rhythmically. The siren pattern on the guitar is fused so well with the rest of the arrangements.
“Goodbye voltaire (you gave me sleep)” has the best bass progression on this album, and it too builds to a depraved ending. The drums in the end sound a desperate plea for the characters they voice. RftD's rhythmic hero is distraught at the loss of sleep and the pressure of seclusion, and the glitch drums at the climactic end ring as fists pounding against the presence of being uncomfortable. It's second act, “Goodbye Voltaire (and all the rain that made me smile)” follows a much brighter tone than the first, including the steady strum of a soothing acoustic.
“Every God is a Monster” listens as if you're traveling through your own mind or an interstate paved with no definite end. About halfway through the song, the sense of impending doom strikes the listener with a storm-like build-up to some hellish strings. Easily the most black metal song on the album, “Every God...” allows you travel to your inner most faithless finding that you never want the song to end.
The following track, “Always in Hallways” returns the album back to a rhythmic thread. This is the best road-tripping song on the album, and just as the majority of the album builds to a climactic end, “Always...” tapers off beautifully. Having that track lead into “Curl Up, Its Time to Die” is quite the trip. The vocals seem to have seen improvement since “I am not coming back home,” although both have their strengths. The alteration's on the female vocalist fit so much better with the overall progression and tone that RftD seeks here. The acoustic guitar at the end at first seems rushed, but then explodes into rhythm creating my favorite outro sequence on Mother Superior.
“Praying for the be(a)st” seems like exactly that to me. The beginning keyboards build to an ominous feeling, and the glitch drums building in the back for the entire song feel like a literal demon is being summoned. If you can give a plot to such a short song, it exemplifies that premise.
Rounding out the album are two of my favorites. “No one ever comes here, but me (dad av en spokelse versjon)" puts a mythic spin on the original, again tapping into some black metal influence it seems. The serenading patterns of “No one...” lead bluntly and gloriously into the most experimental song on Mother Superior “Freelance dream killing machine (gunpoint dub mix)”. Breaking open the original with dirty bass lines, you really couldn't ask for a better end to an album. After being transported through a musical quest for ever-invisible hope, “Freelance...” destroys all prior notions, giving the album a true grand finale.
Seeing how far this band has come only stands as encouragement to see how far I know this band will go, and Mother Superior stands in pivotal effort and success.